PREVIEW | Silverbacks vs. Fury FC

The Atlanta Silverbacks aim for their first win of the season when they host Ottawa Fury FC on Saturday
Apr 10, 2015

Late-game theatrics kept the Atlanta Silverbacks from earning all three points last weekend, but will hope for better fortunes when they host Ottawa Fury FC on Saturday, April 11, 7:30 p.m. ET at Atlanta Silverbacks Park. 

The Silverbacks enter with just a point after a 94th minute penalty kick was converted to pull Indy Eleven even after trailing for the majority of the second half in the season opener. Ottawa's midfielder Julian de Guzman received a red card against the Carolina RailHawks – and will serve a one-match ban to be observed against Atlanta – for dissent.

"The only direction for us to move now, is forward," Silverbacks head coach Gary Smith said. "And we must do it as a group to be successful. Although the result against Indy may have felt like a loss because of the nature of allowing a late equalizer, at the end of the day, a draw is a positive result, and we are happy to earn the point from it.

"This week's match versus Ottawa is a different story, and it is the only thing we are focused on." 

Fury FC fell in their season opener, 3-1, away to the Carolina Railhawks. Ottawa second-half substitute Brandon Poltronieri scored Fury FC's only goal just seconds after entering in the 84th minute. Fury FC also had a chance to score in the first half, but Carl Haworth's penalty kick was saved.

Ottawa midfielders Mauro Eustaquio and Nicki Paterson, and forward Oliver Minatel will return to the lineup from suspension to face Atlanta. Fury FC will again be without the services of captain Richie Ryan and fellow midfielder Sinisa Ubiparipovic – who are still returning to match fitness following preseason injuries. Paulo Junior is sidelined with an injury and Phil Davies is out for another 6-8 weeks after the versatile midfielder broke his arm in a preseason friendly against Syracuse. Fury FC will also be without midfielder de Guzman who will serve a one-match suspension after picking up a pair of yellow cards (resulting in a red) in last Saturday’s opener.

In the Silverbacks match, Shaka Bangura opened the scoring with a 47th minute goal off a failed clearance inside the 18-yard box. The second-year Silverbacks forward found the ball at his feet with a late run after Kyle Porter’s free kick wasn’t properly dealt with by Indy.

The Silverbacks saw their score equalized when Indy’s attack was taken down inside the box with less than 70 seconds to go. Second-half substitute Don Smart shot his penalty to the right against Atlanta’s left-diving rookie goalkeeper C.J. Cochran.

Since Ottawa joined the league in 2014, they’ve gone 2-1-0 against the Silverbacks head-to-head, having split their two visits to Silverbacks Park.

Saturday’s match also marks the return of Mike Randolph and Brandon Poltronieri to Atlanta. The pair spent the 2014 season with the Silverbacks, and Randolph served as team captain.

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